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Monument to General James Edward Oglethorpe
Unveiled at Savannah, Ga., Nov. 23, 1 9i0
Georgia Historical Society
VOL. VII. PART II.
A History of the Erection and
Dedication of the Monument
Gen'l James Edward Oglethorpe
Unveiled in Savannah, Ga., November 23, 1910»
Published by the Georgia Historical Society.
The Morning News
In order to preserve and perpetuate in collected form the his-
tory of the monument to the memory of General James Edward
Oglethorpe which was unveiled and dedicated with appropriate
ceremonies in Savannah, Ga., November 23, 1910, the Georgia His-
torical Society publishes this volume as a contribution to the his-
tory of our State.
The monument itself is but the concrete expression of a sen-
timent which for nearly two centuries has lived in the hearts of
Georgians, and the fact that the work has been so long delayed,
was only due to a desire to erect a memorial whose proportions
and finish should be in keeping with the dignity and character
of the heroic founder of Georgia.
The following pages set forth such facts concerning the monu-
ment itself and such features connected with its dedication as
will be of interest to the historian of the future. It was deemed
appropriate by those having the matter in charge to set apart
three days, November 23, 24 and 25, for the celebration of the
occasion, and inasmuch as Oglethorpe was essentially a soldier,
it was decided to have the exercises chiefly of a military charac-
ter. A number of pictorial illustrations have been included, which
it is hoped, will serve to perpetuate in visible form some of the
leading features of this historic occasion.
GEORGE J. BALDWIN,
W. W. GORDON, JR.,
Committee on Publishing and Printing.
HISTORICAL SKETCH OF THE MOVEMENT.
On the 18th day of May, 1901, a charter was granted by
the Superior Court of Chatham County to the Oglethorpe
Monument Association. This Association was formed by
six representatives each from the Georgia Society of Colonial
Dames of America, the Sons of the Revolution, the Daught-
ers of the American Revolution, and the Society of Colonial
Wars. Its first meeting was held on Nov. 28, 1902, and the
object of the Association was to combine the efforts of these
four patriotic societies toward the raising of funds for the
erection of a suitable memorial in Savannah to the memory
of the truly great man who was the founder of our State.
Tlie moneys which some of the various societies had been
raising separately, were turned into the common treasury
of the Association, and increased in like manner from time
to time until they amounted, in the year 1905, to approxi-
In the summer of that year, at the request of the president
of the Colonial Dames, the representatives from Chatham
County in the Legislature took up the matter of securing
State recognition and aid for the monument, and on July
12, 1905, a joint resolution was introduced in the House to
provide for the erection of a monument. This resolution
was referred to the Committee on Appropriations and hav-
ing been more than once voted down in the committee, was
finally reported back favorably on August 10, 1905, with the
recommendation that the sum of $15,000 be appropriated
for the purpose, and the resolution received its second
reading. Nothing further was done in regard to it at that
During the next session, in the summer of 1906, the reso-
lution met with a stormy and checkered career and was
several times apparently hopelessly shipwrecked before
gaining its final passage.
Under resolution introduced in the House June 27, 1906,
Honorable Walter G. Charlton was invited to address a
joint session of the General Assembly on the life and ser-
vices of General Oglethorpe, and this address was delivered
a short time afterw^ard.
On August 2, 1906, the bill carrying the appropriation of
$15,000 for the monument came up for passage. It was
6 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
referred to the Committee of the Whole, where it was only
saved from defeat by the adoption of an amendment offered
by its friends, providing that the monument should be
erected in Chippewa Square and reciting that the title to
said square was in the State of Georgia. The committee
then reported the bill back favorably as amended.
The report of tke committee was agreed to, but on the
passage of the bill by aye and nay vote it was apparent
that it could not pass, and "before the vote could be an-
nounced the bill was tabled on motion of Mr. Anderson of
On Saturday, August 11th, the bill was, on motion, taken
from the table for the purpose of declaring the vote there-
on, which was announced to be ayes 70, nays 51, and the bill
having failed to receive the requisite constitutional majority
was declared to be lost. On motion the action of the House
in defeating the bill was then re-considered.
A resolution was immediately introduced and referred to
the Rules Committee to make the bill a Special Order for
On the morning of August 13th, the last day when the
bill could be considered by the House, the Rules Committee
submitted a report making the bill a Special Order for that
day. This was voted down by the House.
At the afternoon session of August 13th, on motion of
Mr. Flynt of Spalding, by yea and nay vote of 83 to 25
the House re-considered its action of the morning in refus-
ing to make a Special Order, and adopted the Rules Com-
mittee's report. The bill was then taken up for passage,
and a substitute bill offered by the Chatham delegation was
passed by a vote of 91 to 35.
The bill was immediately transmitted to the Senate and
received its first reading there the same afternoon. The
next morning, August 14th, it was reported favorably by
the Senate Committee on Appropriations and received its
second reading, and on the afternoon of August 15th, the
last day of the Legislative session of 1906, was placed on
its passage and finally enacted into law.
It was approved by Governor Terrell on August 16th,
1906, and the following Commission was appointed by him
to take charge of the work in the name of the State and
carry it on to completion :
Hon. J. Randolph Anderson, Chairman,
Hon. P. A. Stovall,
Hon. A. A. Lawrence.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe.
Hon, Walter G. Charlton,
Hon. P. W. Meldrim,
Hon. J. H. Estill,
Col. A. R. Lawton,
All of Savannah;
Hon. R. E. Park,
Hon. Allen D. Candler,
Hon. W. G. Cooper,
All of Atlanta ;
Hon. Joseph R. Lamar, of Augusta,
Hon. H. F. Dunwoody, of Brunswick.
Hon. J. H. Estill died during the administration of Gov.
Hoke Smith, who appointed Hon. R. J. Davant of Savannah
in his place. Hons. R. E. Park and Allen D. Candler also
died, and Gov. Joseph M. Brown appointed as their suc-
seccors Wymberley J, De Renne and J. Florance Minis,
both of Savannah.
The Act as passed by the Legislature of 1906 read as
Whereas, the State of Georgia contains no fitting memorial to
its founder and first Governor, that great soldier, statesman and
philanthropist, General James Oglethorpe; and,
2nd. Whereas, it is now verging on two centuries since he
founded and fostered this people, protected and defended them
from dissension within, and invasion without, and fitted Georgia
for its great career as a sovereign State, and
3rd. Whereas, It is eminently fitting and desirable that the
people of this State shall make manifest their veneration, loyalty
and gratitude for the life and services of that great man by the
erection of a proper memorial or monument to the memory of
its distinguished founder, in the city in which he first established
the youngest of the American colonies, and which thus became
the cradle of Georgia; and,
4th. Whereas, The Oglethorpe Monument Association, com-
posed of members of the various patriotic societies in this State,
has been incorporated for this purpose and has raised by popular
subscription a considerable sum, therefore;
5th. Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Sen-
ate concurring. That the sum of fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000)
be, and the same is, hereby set aside and appropriated from
money in the treasury, not otherwise appropriated, for the pur-
pose of erecting an adequate memorial, or monument, to General
James Oglethorpe in the city of Savannah; the said memorial or
monument, to be erected in Chippewa Square in said City, the ti-
tle to said square being owned by the State. The amount hereby
appropriated, the sum of seventy-five hundred dollars shall be
available in the year 1907^ and the sum of seventy-five hundred
dollars shall be available in the year 1908. This appropriation
shall be expended by and under the direction, supervision and
control of the Governor of the State, and upon warrants drawn
8 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
by him upon the Treasury accordingly. The Governor of the
State is hereby authorized to permit the Oglethorpe Monument
Association to be associated in the work herein provided for, and
to augment this appropriation by such additional amount as said
Oglethorpe Monument Association maj' desire to contribute; pro-
vided that the same shall be not less than $5,000 and that said
memorial or monument, shall have upon it, either inscribed or
raised, or by tablet, the words:
"Erected by the State of Georgia to the memory of its founder,
the great soldier, eminent statesman and celebrated philanthro-
pist, General James Oglethorpe, who in this City on the 12th day
of February A. D. 1733, established the Colony of Georgia."
Resolved further, by the authority aforesaid. That all laws and
parts of laws in conflict with this resolution be, and the same are
hereby repealed. Approved August 20th, 1906.
This Act was amended by a later Act approved July 20th,
1909. This amending Act changed the wording of the in-
scription to be placed on the monument and provided that
it should read as follows :
"Erected by the State of Georgia, the City of Savannah and the
patriotic societies of the State to the memory of the great sol-
dier, eminent statesman and famous philanthropist. General James
Edward Oglethorpe, who in this City on the 12th daj^ of February
A. D. 1733 founded and established the Colony of Georgia."
This amending Act also provided for the celebration of
the unveiling of the monument as follows :
Be it further resolved, T^hat the Governor of this State be and
he is hereby requested to cause the attendance of the military
forces of this State to participate in the ceremonies attending the
unveiling of said monument when the same shall take place, and
to invite the attendance and participation of the Executive and
military forces of our neighboring sister States; the States of
South Carolina and Florida, whose early history is closely inter-
woven v.'ith our own, and between which the Colony founded by
Oglethorpe was designed to serve as a military barrier, and the
States of Alabama and Mississippi, whose domains formed a part
of the original territory of the Colony of Georgia.
The Oglethorpe Monument Commission began its work
in the autumn of 1906, and after a considerable period of in-
vestigation and deliberation, placed the execution of the
work in the hands of the celebrated sculptor, Mr. Daniel
Chester French, who associated with him Mr. Henry Bacon,
one of the most prominent architects of New York City.
It became apparent to the Commission, from the outset,
that a suitable memorial could not be obtained with the
funds then available, and that the appropriation from the
State would have to be supplemented from outside sources,
and it was decided to rely upon such further assistance and
To General Javies Edxcard Oglethorpe .
not to attempt to confine the monument to the funds then
in the hands of the Commission and in the treasury of the
Oglethorpe Monument Association.
The chairman and other members of the Commission ap-
peared before the City Council of Savannah on May 10,
1909, and presented a petition for an appropriation of
$15,000 toward the erection of a suitable memorial. This
was granted and the City of Savannah appropriated the sum
of $15,000, of which it was provided that the sum of $12,000
should be used by the Commission for the erection of the
monument, and $3,000 should be utilized in the preparation
of the site and toward expenses of the unveiling. The funds
thus received v/ere further supplemented by additional sub-
scriptions from the various patriotic societies mentioned
above and from other organizations as well as from indi-
vidual citizens ; thus raising the total amount in the hands
of the Commission, available for the monument and its sur-
roundings, up to the sum of $38,000, for which amount the
contract had been made by the Commission with the
sculptor, Mr. French.
Ceremonies at the Dedication of the Monument
ERECTED TO THE MEMORY OF
General James Edward Oglethorpe
NOVEMBER 23, 24, 25, 1910.
ColonlAl Seal of Georgia.
Present Seal of Georsila.
JAMES EDWARD OGLETHORPE.
A SKETCH OF THE LIFE OF OGLETHORPE.
General James Edward Oglethorpe, son of Sir Theophil-
us and Eleanor (Wall) Oglethorpe, was born in England
December 22, 1696. At an early age he entered Corpus
Christi College, Oxford, but he soon left that institution
for an active military life. Having served several years in
the British army, under the Duke of Marlborough, he be-
came secretary and aid-de-camp to the famous Prince
Eugene of Savoy, with whom he learned the art of war.
In 1718 he returned to his estate in England, and in 1722
was elected to parliament from the county of Surrey. He
soon became interested in the reformation of abuses which
disgraced prison life at that time, and his sympathies were
especially engaged for the relief of the honest but unfortu-
nate debtors w^ho were thrown into prison. He was made
chairman of a commission to investigate these abuses, and
it occurred to him that a colony could be established for
these people in America between the Carolinas and the
troublesome Spaniards, Who claimed all the territory south
of the Savannah river. A company was organized, a char-
ter obtained, and Oglethorpe with about one hundred and
thirty passengers set sail for America November 17, 1732",
and on February 12, 1733 he landed at the present site of
Savannah, where he found a small tribe of Indians with
Tomochichi as chief.
Having made friends with the Indians, he laid out the
town, fortified it, and built many houses.
In 1734 Oglethorpe sailed for England, taking with him
Tomochichi and several other Indian chiefs to impress them
with England's power. In 1736 he returned to Georgia
and engaged in the active work of the colony. He laid out
Augusta, made treaties of friendship with the Indians,
founded Frederica and fortified it. In 1740 he made a bold
attack upon the Spaniards at St. Augustine, but owing to
the strength of the fort and to sickness in his army he
abandoned the siege.
At the battle of Bloody Marsh in 1742, he drove the Span-
iards from Georgia, and established the English claim to
12 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
On July 23, 1743, ten and a half years after his first land-
ing Oglethorpe set sail for England, never to return. In
1744 he was married to Elizabeth Wright of Cranham Hall.
After a brief experience in the British army in 1745, he re-
tired from active service to his estate, where he spent the
remainder of his long life, "the soul of honor, the embodi-
ment of loyalty and valor, and the model of manly grace
and courtesy." He died at the age of eighty-nine years on
July 1, 1785, and was buried in Cranham church.
Fitting indeed it is that Georgia should perpetuate in
enduring stone and bronze the virtues of her brave and he-
roic founder, and upon the pedestal of his monument in-
scribe in imperishable letters the name of OGLETHORPE.
"Thy great example shall through ages shine,
A favorite theme with poet and divine;
To all unborn thy merits shall proclaim,
And add new honors to thy deathless name."
HISTORY OF THE MONUMENT.
The Oglethorpe Monument Association was chartered
by the Superior Court of Chatham County, May 18, 1901.
This Association was formed by six representatives each,
from the Georgia Society of Colonial Dames of America,
the Sons of the American Revolution, the Daughters of the
American Revolution, and the Society of Colonial Wars.
Its object was to combine the efforts of these four patriotic
societies toward raising the funds for the erection of a
suitable memorial in Savannah to General James Edward
Oglethorpe, the founder of the colony of Georgia.
In the summer of 1905, the representatives from Chatham
county in the Legislature took up the matter of securing
state recognition and aid for the monument, and introduced
a bill for the appropriation of $15,000 for the purpose. Tliis
appropriation was made by the Legislature in the summer
of 1906, and a commission was appointed by the Governor
to take charge of the work in the name of the state.
The Commission consisted of Hon. J. Randolph Ander-
son, chairman, Hons. P. A. Stovall, A. A. Lawrence, Walter
G. Charlton, P. W. Meldrim, J. H. Estill and Col. A. R.
Lawton, of Savannah ; Hons. R. E. Park, State Treasurer,
Allen D. Candler and W. G. Cooper, all of Atlanta; Hon.
Jos. R. Lamar, of Augusta, and Hon. H. F. Dunwoody, of
The Commission entrusted the execution of the work to
the celebrated sculptor, Daniel Chester French, who asso-
ciated with him Mr. Henry Bacon, one of the most promi-
nent architects of New York City. On May 10, 1909, the
City of Savannah, on the application of the Commission,
appropriated $15,000 to the monument, of which it was pro-
vided that $12,000 should be used for the erection of the
monument, and $3,000 should be utilized in the preparation
of the site and towards the expenses of the unveiling.
The monument is now completed, and consists of a he-
roic statue of General Oglethorpe in bronze in the uniform
of a British General of the period. The figure is about
ten feet in height, and stands upon a pink-gray marble ped-
estal or die upon a base of the same material. The base
X4 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
is carved wHh g-arlands of flowers and of pine cones resting
upon palmetto leaves, and is cornered by four lions ram-
pant, each holding a shield. Upon one of these shields is
carved the Coat of Arms of Oglethorpe, and upon the others
the Coats of Arms or Great Seals of the Colony of Georgia,
of the State of Georgia, and of the City of Savananh. The
general design of the monument is Italian renaissance, and
has a stone bench on either side. The northern and south-
ern ends of the plot in which the monument stands are
closed by an exhedra in Indiana limestone, backed by low
iBrtixi4:<.r d&> ^yHSi^ Oder yCorU^f^^ 'f^TL. o'ti<AtJ:a^ d>onn
Memorial Seat of Oglethorpe, Savannah, Ga,
Tomochichi Monument, Savannah, Ga.
To General James Edward Oglelhorpe. 15
WEDNESDAY MORNING, 11:30 O'CLOCK.
INVOCATION", by Rt. Rev. F. F. Reese, Bishop of Geor-
ADDRESS, by Hon. J. Randolph Anderson, Chairman
Oglethorpe Monument Commission, on the History of
of the Monument.
ADDRESS, by Acting British Ambassador, Hon A. Mit-
ADDRESS, by Hon. Walter G. Charlton, on the Life, Char-
acter and Services of Oglethorpe,
UNVEILING OF THE MONUMENT, by His Excellen-
cy Joseph M. Brown, Governor of Georgia, assisted by
the President of the Georgia Society of Colonial Dames
PARADE AND GRAND REVIEW OF TROOPS in Park
Extension by the Governors of Georgia, South Carolina
and Alabama; Sixteen Companies of U. S. Regulars,
Forty Companies of State Troops, Three Companies of
Blue Jackets, and Marines from U. S. Cruiser Birming-
WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON, 3 :00 O'CLOCK.
(In Park Extension.)
U. S. Regulars vs. Georgia Troops.
Two Teams of Six Men, Eleventh U. S. Cavalry.
Two Teams of Six Men, Georgia Hussars.
Two Teams of Six Men, Liberty Independent Troop.
One Team of Six Men, Governor's Horse Guards.
WEDNESDAY EVENING, 8:15 O'CLOCK.
Military Rough Riders Exhibition and Spectacular Exer-
Cavalry Marching Drill, Bareback Hurdling, Roman Rid-
ing, etc., by selected troop of Eleventh Cavalry, U. S. A.
Spectacular Exhibition Drill, Musical Drills, by Seven-
teenth Infantry, U. S. A.
j6 a History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
THURSDAY MORNING, 9:30 O'CLOCK.
(Grand Stand on Waters Road.)
Great Motorcycle Races around Grand Prize Automobile
(Fifty entries expected.)
FIRST RACE — One lap around the course. Open to any
Savannah-owned Motorcycle, single cylinder type.
(Twenty-two entries.) Starts on five seconds inter-
vals. Prizes, Three Silver Cups.
SECOND RACE — Two laps around the course. Open to
any amateur rider and any type of Motorcycle. (Twelve
entries.) Flying start, all at once. Prizes, Three
THIRD RACE — Three laps around the course. Open to
Savannah-owned machines of belt-driven type, single
cylinder. (Fifty entries expected.) Starts on five
seconds intervals. Prizes, Three Silver Cups.
Grand Military Gymkhana.
Of U. S. Regulars. High Jumping, mounted ; Equipment
Race; Conical Wall-tent Pitching; Hasty Intrenching; Po-
tato Race by Mounted Cavalry; Wall Scaling, and other
exciting military field sports and exercises.
THURSDAY AFTERNOON, 3:00 O'CLOCK.
ANNUAL FOOTBALL GAME-
UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA vs. AUBURN.
THURSDAY EVENING, 8:15 O'CLOCK.
Same as on Wednesday evening.
FRIDAY MORNING, 10:00 O'CLOCK.
BATTLE EXERCISES— By U. S. Regulars. Attack by
two battalions Seventeenth Infantry and one squadron
Eleventh Cavalry upon the Coast Artillery Corps, hold-
ing and defending the southern line of Forsyth Park.
From left to right : Hon. Joseph M. Brown. Governor of Georgia: Hon. A. Mitchell Innes,
Acting British Ambassador: Hon. B. B. Comer, Governor of Alabama: Chancellor D. C. Bar-
row of the University of Georgia: Senator Joseph M. Terrell: Senator A. 0. Bacon: Col. A.
M. Brookfield. Resident British Consul: and Hon. Charles G. Edwards, M. C.
Assembling: The Governor and his Staff.
UNVEILING AND DEDICATION.
The day was an ideal one for the historic occasion. A
cloudless autumnal sky showered the splendors of a soft
Southern sun upon a scene of rare impressiveness and
beauty. State and national flags, banners and gay bunting,
lent an added charm to the rich foliage of crimson and
gold, while brilliant military uniforms and handsome dress
completed a picture worthy of a painter's brush. The
monument itself in mute dignity, and veiled with the flags
of Georgia and England united, rose from the centre of
Cliippewa square, and around its base were grouped the
distinguished representatives of a sentiment which at last
had found concrete expression from the hearts of an appre-
ciative people in enduring marble and bronze. On the
left was the Commission appointed by the state to execute
the work. By their side sat the sculptor, Daniel Chester
French, whose genius and artistic skill had created the
bronze statue of Georgia's heroic founder, soon to be un-
veiled, and by his side was Mr. Henry Bacon, the architect
who designed the marble and stone setting for the main
ligure itself. In front sat His Excellency, Joseph M.
Brown, the Governor of Georgia with his staff, and by
his side in appropriate position the Hon. A. Mitchell Innes,
aicting British Ambassador and representative of the Court
of St. James. Governor B. B. Comer of Alabama with his
staff fittingly represented Georgia's territorial daughter to
the west. Hon. Augustus O. Bacon, Georgia's senior sen-
ator, and Hon. Joseph M. Terrell, the junior senator and
former Governor, sat next, with Chancellor David C. Bar-
row of the University of Georgia, Hon. Charles G. Ed-
wards, member of Congress, Col. Daniel C. Kingman of
the U. S. Engineers, and other distinguished visitors.
Back of these were grouped in reserved seats the Society
of Colonial Dames of America, the Daughters of the Ameri-
can Revolution, The Sons of the Revolution, The Society
of Colonial Wars, The Georgia Society of the Cincinnati,
the Georgia Historical Society, representatives of the
United Confederate Veterans, the Hibernia, Victoria, and
St. Andrew's Societies ; representatives of the Board of
/S A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
Trade, Chamber of Commerce, the Cotton Exchange, the
Retail Merchants' Association; the General Committee of
the Oglethorpe Monument Celebration, The Daughters of
the Confederacy, the Board of Aldermen, the County Com-
missioners, the Park and Tree Commission, the City and
County Officials, Solomon's Lodge of Masons, and many
Around these were grouped the various military com-
panies and thousands of citizens, completely filling the
square and the adjacent streets. The gathering of these
bodies amidst the strains of martial music was as inspir-
ing as it was dignified and orderly. When all was in readi-
ness the Hon. J. Randolph Anderson, the Chairman of the
Commission, conducted to the platform the Rt. Rev. F. F.
Reese, the Episcopal Bishop of Georgia, who, after calling
upon all to stand and join in the Lord's Prayer, delivered
the following invocation:
"Almighty God, who art the author and giver of all good
things, and who dost govern all things in Heaven and
earth, we give Thee hearty thanks for the spirit of brave
adventure to which this state owes its birth, and especially
for the courage and spirit of benevolence of thy servant,
James Edward Oglethorpe, its founder, whom we com-
memorate this day. And we beseech Thee to accept and
bless this memorial as the expression of our gratitude for
his labor and sacrifice for the poor and unfortunate. Grant
to all of us, the people of this state, who have entered into
his labor and the labors of other men, that we may be so
faithful to our trust as citizens of this commonwealth, that
peace and happiness, truth and justice, religion and piety
may be established among us for all generations. And may
Thy holy Avill be done and Thy kingdom come among us
and among all the people of our land, to Thy glory and the
everlasting salvation of all men ; through Jesus Christ, our
ADDRESS OF HON. J. RANDOLPH ANDERSON.
Mr. Anderson then in behalf of the Commission deliver-
ing the monument into the hands of the state, made the
The Invocation by Rt. Rev. F. F. Reese.
1 1th U. S. Cavalry.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. ig
"We have met here today to celebrate the successful
attainment of a great object which for many, many years
has been dear to the hearts of the people of our state. For
nearly a century successive generations of Georgians have
agitated and hoped for the erection of a suitable memorial
to the great soldier, statesman and philanthropist who cheer-
fully sacrificed the comforts of his home and laid aside a
most prominent position and distinguished career in England
to lead his chosen band of followers across the stormy
wastes of the Ocean. As Goldsmith says :
" 'To distant climes, a dreary scene
Where half the convex world intrudes between
Through torrid tracts, with fainting steps they go
Where wild Altama murmurs to their woe.'
"Landing upon this bluff, he pitched his tent and estab-
lished on the verge of an unexplored wilderness the begin-
nings of the colony of Georgia^the state which we, her
sons, today acclaim with loving pride as the Empire State
of the South ; the largest, and in material resources, poten-
tially perhaps the greatest of all these American states east
of the Mississippi.
"It is often said that we live today in a wholly material-
istic age, and that our people are so entirely absorbed in
the work of the present and in plans for the future that
they have no time for thoughts of the past and but scant
respect for its deeds ; but this distinguished assemblage de-
monstrates that firmly implanted within us we still possess
the deeply rooted conviction of the sturdy Anglo-Saxon
stock from which we sprung, that a people without monu-
ments is a people without a history. History itself indeed
shows us that a people without monuments is a people
without civilization and without progress. No race and
no people which have exhibited the trait of commemorating
in storied marble or enduring bronze the deeds and virtues
of its departed heroes has ever failed to mightily sway the
destinies of mankind ; and no people or race which has
failed to do so has ever left more than a passing imprint on
the sands of time.
"Of all the great Englishmen who had a hand in the dis-
covery or in the colonization of this continent none is more
worthy of being honored by the whole American people
than he to whose memory we are paying tribute today;
for aside from all other reasons, we know that to his for-
20 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Motiument
titude, to his daring and military skill is due the fact
that the dominant language and civilization of North
America today is English instead of Spanish. To us Geor-
gians he stands in a closer and dearer relation, for it was
upon our soil he wrought out his great work and laid deep
and strong the enduring foundations of our state. And,
therefore, our people have always gratefully and affection-
ately revered his memory and will do so till time shall be
no more. In the early days while he was still in life the
people of the colony made annual celebration of his natal
day; and since his death the continued desire has existed
to erect a proper tribute to his memory.
"Time does not permit of my making mention here of
the various efforts that at different periods have been made
in this direction nor of how the hopes of our people were
thwarted. As the years rolled on these efforts became
more frequent and more earnest, but civil war, pestilence
and panic all exerted their baleful effect to postpone once
and again the desired day and balked the efforts of our
people and of the state itself. I am informed that in the
year 1860 the lower House of the General Assembly passed
a bill carrying an appropriation for a monument to Gen.
Oglethorpe, but the fast gathering clouds of the great war
between the states were already casting their menacing
shadows over the land ; and the Senate felt unable to enact
the measure into law.
"Many times in the past have patriotic Georgians urged
the erection of a fitting monument to Gen. Oglethorpe but
it had been reserved to our own day and to our own gene-
ration to see this long-cherished and long-deferred hope
of our people fulfilled. Today marks an important event
in our state's history. At last the cherished dream has be-
come a reality, the long-deferred hope has ripened into ful-
fillment and Georgia has gathered here today her sons and
daughters from Rabun Gap to Tybee Light, and by act of
her General Assembly has caused her chief executive and a
large part of the military forces of the state to participate
in these unveiling ceremonies and to give to them a solem-
nity and impressiveness worthy of the dignity of the state
and of the memory of the truly great man who was its
"Tlie day and the occasion are all the more auspicious be-
cause we are honored by the presence of the acting ambas-
sador from the Court of St. James to this country, who is
here to officially represent the British government and take
To General James Edivard Oglethorpe.
part in doing honor to the memory of a man of whom both
countries have just reasons to be proud. We are also honor-
ed by the presence of the chief executive of our sister state
of Alabama, whose early history is so closely interwoven
with our own ; as well as by representatives of the federal
government in the presence of the officers and men of a
large body of troops and of ships of war.
"In the Legislature of 1905 and 1906, of which I was a
member, the state determined that the time had at last
come when this monument should be erected. By an act
approved Aug. 16, 1906, the state was to be supplemented by
the funds already raised by the Oglethorpe monument Asso-
ciation, and such other funds as it and the various patriotic
societies of the state composing it, and other parties, might
contribute. The distinguished gentleman who was then
Governor of Georgia, and who is now our junior United
States senator, and present with us today, appointed a Com-
mission to carry out the work in the name and on behalf of
the state, and did me the honor to appoint me as its chair-
man. On behalf of the Commission, I now have the honor
to make personal report before this audience to the present
chief executive of our state as to the actions of the Commis-
"Realizing, sir, that such a memorial, as our people de-
sired could not be had with the funds then available, the
Commission sought and obtained from the municipality of
Savannah the additional sum of $12,000 for the monument
and a further sum to aid in the ceremonies of the unveiling.
The Commission was very fortunate in being able to enlist
the interest and obtain the services of the talented gentle-
man who is with us today, the great sculptor, Daniel Ches-
ter French, who is now generally regarded in this country
as the greatest of all living American sculptors. I am
proud and happy also to be able to report that he himself
considers this monument to be the finest piece of work he
has ever done.
"The monument, sir, is now completed and the statue is
about to be unveiled by your excellency. The Commission
has completed its labors in this behalf and is now ready to
deliver the monument into the care of the city of Savannah
to be preserved for the people of this state."
22 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
ADDRESS OF HON. A. MITCHELL INNES.
After the address of Mr. Anderson, the Hon. A. Mitchell
Innes, the acting British Ambassador and representative
of the Court of St. James, spoke as follows :
"Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen :
"It is with peculiar pleasure that I have come among
you today to do honor to the brave and accomplished gen-
tleman, whose statue decorates this spot. Oglethorpe was
in every way a fitting founder of the great state, to which
he alluded as 'the little colony now called Georgia.'
"What would he think if he could return to the city of
Savannah today and see how great a forest his little
plantation has grown? When he landed at Charlestown
nearly two hundred years ago in the good ship Anne, of
about two hundred tons burden, with his company of 130
souls, who must have been tightly packed in the small craft,
not the most vivid imagination could have pictured the bril-
liant future which that adventurous voyage inaugurated.
"Nine years later, indeed, the opposition to the paternal
government of Oglethorpe saw nothing better than a scene
of desolation, and his opponents complained that he would
allow them neither riches, nor property, nor rum to gladden
their hearts. They were no better than slaves themselves,
according to their own account.
"No doubt his government, which his enemies character-
terized as a jumble of politics and power was despotic, as it
had to be in the circumstances, as every beginning must be,
and no doubt he maintained a discipline which was irksome
to many But we may be sure that it was at that time not
only important, but vitally necessary to the life of the col-
ony, bounded as it was on the south by the territor}^ of a
hostile power. If he had allowed the introduction of spirits,
or if he had permitted the life of ease, which the possession
of slaves would have entailed in the little community, the
weakening of energy which would have resulted and the
demoralization which might have ensued among the Indian
tribes, on who he relied, might have been fatal to the future
of the colony.
"For Oglethorpe was no Puritan. Quite the contrary : his
sympathies were with the Jacobites, and certainly the first
feast which the weary travelers enjoyed when they landed
on these shores savors but little of Puritanism. A chroni-
To General James Edwatd Oglethorpe. 23
cler has kindly handed down to posterity an account of the
bill of fare. It consisted of four fat hogs, eight turkeys, be-
sides English beef and fowls and other provisions. A hogs-
head of punch, that is 63 gallons of that potent beverage;
a hogshead of beer, besides large quantities of wine. And
when the chronicler went on to notice what evidently struck
him as the most remarkable thing about the banquet, as it
certainly was : 'And all,' he says, 'was disposed in a man-
ner so regular that no person was drunk.'
"The whole of Oglethorpe's life contradicts the accusa-
tions which his enemies hurled against him. On the con-
trary, his was one of those minds filled with a great human
love, which refuses to believe that nature has fixed a gulf
between this class and that. A born gentleman, he had
grasped the truth that the distinction which we, in our little
circle, draw between the aristocrat and the peasant comes
not of God but of man. More than this, he had grasped a
still greater truth, that there is gold of full value in the des-
titute and the outcast, that the terrible retribution that so-
ciety visits on the unsuccessful is not always either neces-
sary or just; that in the Fleet and the Marshalsea, those
awful prisons of the debtor, there was hidden a human na-
ture full of power to rise, full of the ability to create, want-
ing only in the strength to burst the gyves which society,
which professed but did not always practice Christianity,
had firmly welded round their limbs.
"You all of you remember the experiences of the immor-
tal Pickwick in the Fleet, when rather than pay the dam-
ages which had been unjustly awarded to Mrs. Bardell, he
preferred to submit to the penalty of imprisonment. You
remembered the cells he looked into, which he mistook for
coal cellars, and the atmosphere of depravity and degrada-
tion which pervaded the whole place. Yet in his day the
debtors' prisons had already been improved, thanks to the
efiforts of Oglethorpe and later of Howard, who must have
been inspired by Oglethorpe's example in the great work of
reform which he undertook.
"Today, I am glad to say, we have come to a better
knowledge of human nature. Slowly we are realizing that
prison is not the cure for all social evils ; that, far from it,
it is often nothing but the nostrum of the quack, which
while doing no good to the patient's sickness, induces other
disorders not less grave than that which it professes to heal.
"In all great reform movements of the present day Ameri-
ca is taking an honorable and a prominent part, whether it
24 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
is for the reform of the prison system, the reform of cor-
rupt municipalities, or the improvement in international re-
lations. The United States has been especially to the fore
in the promotion of the friendly settlement of disputes.
"At no time in the history of our two countries have the
relations been more cordial. There is not a cloud on the
horizon. All the difficult boundary disputes have been set-
tled. The complicated questions regarding the use of
boundary waters have been regulated, and a joint commis-
sion has been established for settling all questions which
may arise in the application of the principles laid down and
for advising on any other questions that may be referred to
it. A quarrel a century old has just been swept away by
arbitration. And this result is in no small measure due to
the untiring efforts of Mr. Knox and his predecessor, Mr.
Root, toward this goal.
"Only a few days ago one of your prominent statesmen
said to me that he could imagine no dispute between the
United States and Great Britian which could not be settled
by amicable negotiations or by arbitration, and that he con-
sidered the future destinies of the two countries to be in-
dissolubly bound up together
"You may feel sure that those sentiments are heartily re-
ciprocated on the other side of the water, and that, so far
as human eftort can prevail or good will can reach, we shall
do our share toward preserving and cementing a friendship
which we regard as one of our most priceless treasures."
ADDRESS OF HON. WALTER G. CHARLTON.
After the address of Mr. Innes, the Hon. Walter G. Charl-
ton of Savannah delivered the following oration :
"Governor of Georgia, Ladies and Gentlemen, My Fellow
"Near two centuries ago a man of strong and noble na-
ture sought here and there in London a missing friend,
whose character and kindly qualities kept him in affection-
ate remembrance. His search brought him at length to
the debtors' prison of the Fleet, where in vilest surrround-
ings, deliberately imprisoned in a narrow cell with victims
of small-pox, he found the friend of his youth, dying of that
loathsome disease. When he departed from that horrible
scene, his life was consecrated to a great purpose. With
the passing of the years there came a bright day in the
Address of Hon. Walter G. Charlton.
' *-'*"*^^iMiJSBi ^ "'liflB^^^^^M
( '^~ t' ■■JPICPft^HHBiff^^rO
^^^Hi^MPC ^^^^^H 4*
To General James Edward Oglethorpe 25
long ago, when as the soft voices of spring were calling
back to life and glory the sleeping beauties of nature, there
landed upon what was destined to become a sovereign state
a small band, selected to start upon its career the most re-
markable experiment in the history of colonization. The
purpose had reached its fulfillment, for the sorrowing friend
was Oglethorpe ; the adventurers, the passengers of the
Anne ; the land, the commonwealth which holds our alle-
giance, our hopes, our happiness.
"As they stood at that historic moment beneath the mar-
velous blue of the February sky — free as the winds which
sighed through the majestic pines which surrounded them —
their memories aglow with the hospitality which had re-
ceived and sheltered them as their voyage drew to its con-
clusion on the neighboring shores of Carolina, no happier
people ever faced the serious responsibilities of life. About
them was grace and song and beauty ; before them, the pros-
pect of rest and content ; within them, the peace of God.
The tempestuous Atlantic, with its wintry wastes, had be-
come a memory; and in the dim vistas of the past, the cruel
bitterness of man's brutality was fading away as the phan-
toms of the night before the warmth and splendor
of the rising sun. They were not makers of history, these
six score men and women from the debtors' prisons of Eng-
land. They were the opportunity through which history
is made. With all the limitations the condition suggests,
they had been the victims of the most merciless system of
laws which ever disgraced a civilized country — and were
now free ; free to take up the broken journey of a life which,
burdened as it had been with measureless suffering, had
yet been untouched by the vice and dishonesty which sur-
rounded it hour by hour. They were good men who had
failed in the practical affairs of life, and from whom had de-
parted the buoyancy of youth. They had marked time as
ambition hurried by and was lost. And yet, when the last
man stepped ashore on that historic day the echo of his
footfall was to sound down the centuries ; the historian was
to take up a new story in the annals of nations — for the
great tide in hviman affairs had turned definitely to its up-
"There had been nothing like it in the history of mankind.
They were of the weak and oppressed of earth. Few in
number; untrained in military venture, unskilled in civic
construction, their mision was to build for all time an em-
pire in a v/ilderness and hold it against the warlike savage
26 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
and the armies and navies of one of the greatest powers of
Europe. Even as they set foot upon the shore, facing them
were the hordes of Indians whom they were to resist, whilst
to the south were gathering like unto the storm-clouds of
the coming tempest the hosts of Spain. Yet from the tragic
elements of failure came victory, for in the divine purposes
of the Almighty it had been ordained at that moment there
should stand upon the soil of Georgia the one man in all
the world through whom victory might come.
"A great artist, under the inspiration of a great subject,
has brought to triumphant conclusion a work of art which,
for all time, will hold the attention and interest of those
whose vision rises above the sordid and groveling concerns
of life and takes within its scope the things which charm
and ennoble thought and action. To him who loves art
for art's sake, the faithfulness of detail ; the grace of outline ;
the strength of pose ; the historic perfection of the por-
trayal will hold in fascination. What the Georgian will see
and what he will carry in his memory from this historic spot
will be the recollection of a strong, dominant warrior, with
the fighting look upon his face — resolute and unconquerable
— in the wisdom of Providence destined to stand on Georgia
soil and in one momentous day end forever a conflict which
had convulsed the civilization of Europe for centuries; and
to see as he sheathed his victorious sword what would be
in time the greatest monument it was ever given to man to
rear — a free and sovereign State.
"Human force and genius are so often contrasted with
the grave crises which threaten to destroy the organized
affairs of men, that when emergencies occur we instinctively
search the perspective for the inevitable relief. The tension
of the situation reacts upon the tendencies of given minds
and won or lost no great cause ever swayed the hopes and
emotions of mankind but from the stress and conflict sprang
some heroic spirit to leave its shining record on the pages
of history. Of the greatness of Oglethorpe is the fact that
no crisis was at hand when he started upon the illustrious
career, in recognition of which a grateful people this day
do homage to his memory. In the times in which he began
life the direction in which his steps led was along the beaten
path of thousands. A military apprenticeship under gen-
erals of renown ; a parliamentary career of more or less use-
fulness ; a respectable and quiet old age amid the congenial
surroundings of a privileged class — it was the common fate
of those from whom he came
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 27
"The imagination falters as it attempts to reconstruct the
conditions upon which the contemporaries of Oglethorpe
looked with the complacency which hourly contact indu-
ces. In military prowess ; in terrific hardships upon land
and sea; in shrewd and cunning diplomacy and politics,
the age was supreme. For the simpler and nobler quali-
ties from which are evolved the patriot and the brother,
there was neither place nor recognition. The greatest sol-
dier of the age did not hesitate to sell his country for gold ;
the poet on bended knee served the fruitions of his soul to
the taste of the dissolute in power; the statesman pandered
to the vices of those who could repay in coin and place the
eloquence which belonged to the race and not to the indi-
vidual. Jeffries had not long since ridden upon his circuit,
with a sneer upon his lips, sending to the gallows, amid the
brutal clamor of the accompanying mob, women and chiki-
ren for offenses which now receive the least of punishments.
The poor were despised; the sick abandoned; the stricken
in mind maltreated and exhibited for money. Deep down
in all of this misery, friendless and hopeless, forgotten of
friend and kindred, removed even from the exhausted mal-
ice of foes, was the insolvent debtor whose only crime was
his inability to deliver at the moment of demand the money
he had promised to pay.
"Appalling as was the condition which prevailed as the
century drew to its close, the most frightful manifestation
was the unprotested acceptance of it as endurably natural.
Removed by the circumstances of birth from its more debas-
ing aspects and influences was born on Dec. 22, 1696, James
Edward Oglethorpe. Influence and opportunity brought
him a commission, in his fifteenth year, under Marlborough,
and after the peace of 1712 he served under Prince Eugene
in the campaigns on the Danube There could have been
no better martial schooling. But in this English boy was
something beyond military enthusiasm. Working in his
active brain was the constructive force which moulds states-
men, and so directs and rules the destinies of nations. He
mig'ht in the parliamentary career upon which he entered
in 1722, have attained distinction, or, restive in the subser-
vient crowd which dog the footsteps of the great, he might
have gone prematurely to that life of quiet which in the dis-
tance awaited his coming. It was otherwise ordained. The
pen of a great novelist a century later aroused to indigtiant
protest the English mind against the iniquities of imprison-
ment for debt, and the echo of that far ofif revolution in
28 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
public sentiment sounded at length in the constitution of
"But on the day when Oglethorpe moved by the misfor-
tune of a friend passed through the portals of the Fleet to
find Robert Castell suffering amid the unspeakable brutali-
ties of the debtors' prison the tortures of small-pox, there
was no public conscience to be aroused to horror. When
Hampden stormed with vivid bursts of eloquence in the
British parliament, appealing to the eternal principles of
liberty, though they brought down upon him the wrath of
royalty, his words found lodgment in the souls and memo-
ries of thousands, to grow and develop until in time all En-
gland responded to the truths he had proclaimed. The sen-
timent and the crisis were at hand. But upon this man
was to fall not only the responsibility of meeting and over-
coming a great evil by the force of his individuality, but of
creating the opportunity without which his enthusiasm and
devotion must fade and perish for want of that upon which
it must take root to live.
"The England of 1729 took no heed of what fate might
befall the insolvent debtor. Misfortune and misery excit-
ed its mirth ; and compassion like some feeble growth slight-
rooted in arid soil, sent its weak and nerveless tendrils here
and there in fitful and uncertain ways toward what might
prove support. The man and the evil stood face to face,
and singly and alone, as in the tales where moved the
knights-errant of the age of poesy, he gave fight until the
sheer gallantry of the spectacle began to make a responsive
thrill, and gather to him, one by one, the kindred spirits
which, few in number, but worthy of the cause in which
they fought, stood with him until the glorious end became
a conclusion never to be undone in the history of man. His
chivalrous heart, full of indignant pity for the sorrows upon
vvhich he looked, Oglethorpe introduced into parliament
a resolution of inquiry into the conditions of the debtors'
prisons. The investigation which followed revealed, in the
language of an historian of that epoch, 'infamous jobbery
and more infamous cruelty on the part of prison officials.'
With the report came the opportunity without which the
greatness of individuals means nothing.
"They fail to grasp the greatness of this man's nature who
see in his efforts only the workings of emotional benevo-
lence — the distempered energy which forces its conceptions
of altruism upon the poor with no thought for the poor
man's dignity of thought and independence of spirit. What
Battalion Benedictine Cadets.
1st Regiment Band.
To General James Edivard Oglethorpe, 29
moved him to action was a divine wrath against injustice —
the scorn of an exalted mind for the besotted barbarities of
a practice which found no warrant in the laws of God or
the promptings of common humanity. It was characteris-
tic of the situation that when the charter of Georgia came
to be signed the names written into it were few — few and
known and honored. Written at a time when the great civ-
ic and private virtues which illustrate every condition of
our day were in a state of dormancy, its language places
it among the priceless documents of the ages. Without
profit or reward or hope of material benefit to any incorpo-
rator, it was recited that his majesty, having taken into con-
sideration the miserable circumstances of many of his own
poor subjects, ready to perish for want, as likewise the dis-
tress of many poor foreigners who would take refuge here
from persecution, hath, out of his fatherly compassion to-
ward his subjects, been graciously pleased to grant a char-
ter for incorporating a number of gentlemen by the name
of 'The Trustees for establishing a colony of Georgia in
"We are accustomed to the spectacle of public altruism,
where the plethoric dispenser of charity pursues his com-
placent wa}^ with a stafif of newspaper reporters at his heels,
and followed by the gaping multitude from whom he has
drawn his wealth ; and with cheque book in one hand and
chisel in the other erects an edifice with the one and with
the other carves his ignoble name that we may not forget
the incident. But here was a soul crying aloud, like John
in the wilderness, with no thought of self, that the helpless
might be lifted from the depths of despair and the stricken
in spirit take hope for the renewed conflicts of a life which
had come to be with them a vague and insubstantial mem-
ory. Whatever his eloquence or want of eloquence, from
the material of the impossible this one man evolved the pos-
sible and the fact; and when the slow processes of legis-
lative inquiry began to quiver into movement, and piece by
piece to form in the minds of the few the result which took
form in the charter of Georgia, the refuge for the friendless
and the oppressed, the first practical step in the direction
of moral reform in social conditions had been taken ; and
although the labor and eloquence of an hundred years were
to be expended before the revolution in public sentiment
became assured and the Samaritan began once more to
travel along the highways of life, the fact remains that
among human agencies to the founder of Georgia is to be
JO A History of the Erection and' Dedication of the Monument
ascribed the first practical step in the direction of that com-
prehensive altruism which in our day works to its blessed
ends with no hope of reward and no thought of personal
"It was not to be conceived that any man, be his persua-
siveness what it might, could impress on King or parlia-
ment or subject the practicability or desirability of estab-
lishing in a distant wilderness beyond the seas a colony for
the friendless and the oppressed, without more. The
shrewdness of Oglethorpe's mind foresaw that without
some practical importance to be given the movement he
had in contemplation, something which would appeal to a
general sentiment already existing, rather than to one which
should exist, but did not, the work he had in view would
never progress beyond his hopes. Whatever might be the
social degradation to which England had descended, with
the consequent indifference to the inevitable results which
followed upon such a deplorable condition, in one direction
the public sentiment was sound. An appeal which was
founded upon the necessity or advisability of extending the
military power had prompt and effective response from no-
ble and peasant. Marlborough might traffic with the Court
of France, but Marlborough was none the less the great
general who had carried the flag of England in triumph
through the ranks of continental powers ; whilst wherever
the ocean beat, over its stormy waves floated in defiant free-
dom the historic banner which our ancestors loved.
"Colonies for the exercise of benevolence were unknown
to the statesmanship of that or any other age ; but colonies
for military purposes were as old as civilization itself. The
presentation was attractive ; the utility demonstrable.
Across the stretches of a vast ocean was a colony favored
of the crown and established in the sentiments of the people.
To the south and west were tribes of savages of unknown
numbers, ready and eager to descend upon its resources,
whilst in the offing were gathered the navies of the heredi-
tary foe of England, with which at intervals it had waged
desperate warfare extending over centuries of time. So to
the project of the benevolent colony was added the alluring
prospect of a colony which was to interpose its effective
presence between Carolina on the one hand and the Span-
iard and Indian on the other. Men might scoff at the op-
portunity to be furnished the insolvent debtor to redeem his
fortunes, but it would not occur to the practical minded
Briton to view with indifference a determined body of ag-
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. j/
gressive E^nglishmen to be drawn from the fighting stock
of the old country and landed upon a distant shore charged
with the duty of fighting, and fighting in what to all was
not only a good cause, but a cause which had in it the ele-
ment of temper as well as right.
"And so what was apparently the secondary purpose of
the settlement of Georgia became by force of circumstances
inherent in the original project the real purpose — and the
charter in ringing terms made this the only military colony
in America. In considering the character and success of
Oglethorpe both purposes are to be borne in mind. That
his object was really to lift from the deplorable condition
in which he was the insolvent debtor, there can be no doubt;
that he accepted not only in good faith but with the enthusi-
asm of one in whom the spirit of chivalry was developed to
its highest excellence, the additional charge to carry to suc-
cess the English arms, is equally certain. No one of his
unusual perspicacity could fail to know that a colony of in-
solvent debtors just from the loathsome prisons of England,
however honest they might be, would be worse than useless
as a military establishment. It meant in all probability just
so many more people to protect. A man who was simply
wise without being great and humane would upon the grant-
ing of the charter with its two objects, have ignored the
one and fixed his hopes upon the other.
"If he had followed the paths of his predecessors in colo-
nial experimentation that would have been his determina-
tion. If he had in view personal aggrandizement, personal
greed, personal privilege, the military feature assured the
friendless prisoners would have been relegated to despair. It
is to be remembered of this man so long as history shall carry
the deeds and greatness of mortals to a discriminating pos-
terity, that in all the years of the administration of the af-
fairs of the colony of Georgia, from the moment when the
project took shape in his mind and heart to the moment
when, his work accomplished, he saw the lines of
her coast recede from his vision ; through the resulting years
of honor and dignity, unto the moment when he passed into
the peace of eternity, the founder of Georgia never owned
a foot of Georgia soil ; enjoyed no privilege in her vast do-
main save such as was necessary to the effective discharge
of his public trust ; and so far from taking to his profit one
cent devoted to her development or the purposes of her set-
tlement, left the service of Georgia and of the crown of En-
S2 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
gland with fortune impaired and never restored by the gov-
ernment which had profited by his work.
"You will search in vain through the stories of American
colonization, my fellow Georgians, for the instance which
suggests remotely the disinterestedness of him in whose hon-
or we are here today. Integrity and disinterestedness in
public life as the illustrated Oglethorpe, so made they our
people great in the days which followed. Guard with con-
stant watchfulness this priceless heritage, for on that day
when we become indifferent to the influence of these virtues ;
that moment when we view with complacency the give and
take of modern politics, so sure as the rising of the sun will
be the passing of the republic which Southern thought and
sacrifice made possible and Southern tradition and devotion
keep secure in the deadly storms which are now shaking it
to its foundations.
"The occasion is concerned with the individual rather than
the incidents which one by one formed his life work into a
great historical event, not without its epic setting. Consider
for a moment a broad and chivalric nature, trained in the
school of military service under the great captains of Europe,
at the head of a colony of 120 men and women, broken in for-
tune and in spirit, bound for a wild country across the tem-
pestuous seas, extending the written words of the char-
ter from the waters of the Savannah to the South seas — a
land inhabited by savages of warlike disposition and habit,
and menaced by the naval and military power of the ancient
and truculent foe of England. Yet when on November 30,
1732, the good ship Anne set sail from Gravesend and turned
her prow to the setting sun, at that moment began a distinct
epoch not only in the military history of England, but in the
moral development of mankind.
"Upon that momentous voyage and its conclusion at the
hospitable shores of Carolina it is not permissible to dwell
at length. Leaving the colonists in the generous care of the
noble people of that great colony, Oglethorpe pursued his
way to Georgia and in a brief interview with Tomochichi set-
tled for all time the relations between the colony and the In-
dians There is no such colonial record anywhere in Ameri-
ca. Without this victory of peace the colony could not have
progressed, if it could have started upon its way, and it
would reflect upon a generous people to forego a passing
tribute to that great Georgian of the long ago whose broad-
ness of mind and faithfulness of character made possible the
solution of this problem which confronted the colonists at
Battalion 1st Regiment.
2d Battalion 1st Infantry.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 33
the threshold of their undertaking. It has been said that
'not a day passes over the earth but men and women of no
note do great deeds, speak great words and suffer noble
sorrows. Of these obscure heroes, philosophers and mar-
tyrs, the greater part will never be known till that hour when
many that are great shall be small and the small great; but
of others the world's knowledge may be said to sleep; their
lives and characters lie hidden from nations in the annals
that record them.'
"Of these last was Tomochichi, who, when upward of
ninety years of age, was fighting the enemies of Georgia. In
a neighboring square, a few hundred feet from this spot,
where he was laid to rest by the people of Georgia, a noble
band of Georgia women, carrying out the forgotten behest
of Oglethorpe made in the long ago, have placed as a me-
morial where he was buried a boulder of Georgia granite.
On it is inscribed that he was the Mico of the Yamacraws;
the companion of Oglethorpe, and the friend and ally of
the colony of Georgia. As they were associated in life, so
let them live together in our grateful memories, and let this
spot on which stands the monument to the one discard
a designation which is meaningless and take on the name
of the old warrior whose friendship made possible the
peaceful settlement of the colony of Georgia.
"From the petty details and annoyances of colonial in-
auguration, infinitely more trying to one of Oglethorpe's
character than the stern hardships and dangers of cam-
paigning, the project in what began to be its more critical
phase engrossed the thought and anxiety of the leader.
The Indian had been converted into a friend but the war-
clouds were still gathering to the south. To attempt to stay
that storm by the exhibition of one hundred and twenty in-
solvent debtors would have recalled, amid the derisive laugh-
ter of the gods, Xerxes stilling the sounding waves with the
uplifting of his hands. But the call to battle which rung in
the words of the Georgia Charter had not been unheeded.
The first adventurers who sailed in the Anne came from
the debtors' prison, but the colonists who followed during
the next three years were of as free and sturdy a stock as
ever ventured forth to extend the prestige and power of
England. These freemen from England and Scotland,
with the brave-hearted Salsburgers, were the substantial
colonists of Georgia, and from their arrival here the move-
ment took on new life.
J4 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
"It was a colony as notable for what it did not do as for
that which was undertaken and accomplished. It was of
the fortune of mankind that at the critical moments the
guiding power was in the man who had made the experi-
ment possible. An apparently impossible undertaking
which must have appealed to the age in which it was es-
sayed as a comic manifestation, took on a practical busi-
ness aspect within a few hours of the landing. The In-
dians became friends ; toleration prevailed ; civic and mili-
tary progression went on side by side ; even the dreaded
witch in free Georgia had more rights than the minister of
•God who in higher latitudes wandered from colony to colony
seeking in vain the rest which his vocation suggested and his
character demanded and after centuries of persecution here
at last the learned and patient Jew found peace. To the
practical mind of Oglethorpe no detail was negligible. As
there were no mercenary aims in the venture itself or its
development, the grinding processes which were applied
elsewhere found no toleration here. It was not only a
practical mind which governed, but the mind of a construc-
tive statesman, trained in the hard school of military neces-
"Oglethorpe not only dealt successfully with the petty
details of colonial life, but with singular clearness his vis-
ion took within its scope the things which were to come.
He forbade slavery and prohibited rum, industries which
found lodgement only after his departure. The very plan
upon which Savannah progresses was formulated by him.
The instructed Georgian cannot look in any direction here
without being reminded of the great man who was responsi-
ble for the existence of Georgia. The fate of the colony
was in the keeping of this one man. Had he faltered ; had
his resources of mind and soul even so much as checked
their out-pour at any given time, the experiment had fail-
ed. He had already accomplished a great work. The col-
ony of Georgia had been fixed on safe lines, and altruism
had been rewritten upon the souls of men. A great man
and a great work had come together, and the vitality of a
great nature had been breathed into the work.
"But the colonization of Georgia even upon such lofty
ideals was the accomplishment of only a part of that which
Oglethorpe had in mind. As you face his statue, with the
naked sword in hand and its defiant and fighting look to-
ward the south, another Oglethorpe confronts you. The
statesman has stripped away his robes, and the lieutenant
To General James Edward Ogleikorpc. ^5
of Marlborough and Eugene, with the problem of centuries
before him, awaits the moment when along the narrow
edge of the gleaming blade in his hand shall flash the sig-
nal of battle, and the old quarrel between England and
Spain find its solution.
"From the settlement on February 12, 1733, the colony
had progressed without special incident for a year. In
the summer of that- year Oglethorpe had returned to Eng-
land, accompanied by Tomochichi ; and on March 10, 1734,
the Purisburg, with the Salsburgers, arrived — the High-
landers sailed on the Prince of Wales, Oct. 20, 1735. The
London Merchant and the Symond left England with the
Frederica colonists on Dec. 21, 1735. Having returned
to the colony toward the close of 1736, Oglethorpe again
sailed for England to urge the departure of the military
contingent. A portion of the troops sailed on May 7, 1738,
and the remainder, with Oglethorpe as general, arrived off
Jekyl bar on Sept. 18, 1738.
"During the intervals, Oglethorpe, with the assistance
of Tomochichi, made frequent demonstrations along
the Spanish frontier. Hostilities began on November
15, 1739, with the slaying of two Highlanders by the
Spaniards, on Amelia Island. Oglethorpe at once gave
pursuit, pushing on to the St. John's river, and burning
three outposts. Marching in the direction of St. Augus-
tine he attacked and defeated a detachment of the enemy,
and attempted unsuccessfully to take Forts St. Francis
and Picolata. Returning on Jan 1, 1740, he burnt the latter
and reduced the former. It never occurred to Oglethorpe
to stay whipped. Driven off today, he was back on the
morrow — a practice which the Spanish governor took
much to heart as unreasonable, with a touch of discourtesy
to a successful antagonist.
"In May, 1740, with an army two thousand strong, con-
sisting of regulars, militia and Indians, with co-operative
fleet under Admiral Vernon, he moved on to St. Augustine;
captured Fort Moosa, and signaling the lleet to action, pre-
pared to deliver the assault on the fortifications of the Florida
strongliold. The fleet failed to respond and departed, and
the unsupported attack from the land becoming thus im-
practicable, a siege of three weeks followed, which Ogle-
thorpe was finally compelled to abandon. To his repeated
and urgent requests for reinforcements the home go\ern-
nient made no response, and he had been practically aban-
<!oned to his fate when, in the summer of 1741, the long
S6 A Histoty of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
gathering storm burst in all its fury A Spanish fleet of
fifty-one sails had appeared in June of that year. Its ves-
sels, in one way and another, were so badly used by Ogle-
thorpe in detail that it finally disappeared, to be replaced
on June 28 by the St. Augustine fleet of thirty-eight sails,
Oglethorpe retarded its movements until July 5, when, after
a hot engagement, lasting four hours, it passed the batter-
ies and got out of range toward Frederica, upon which place
Oglethorpe fell back — the enemy landing on the south end
of St. Simon's. On July 7, 1742, the Spaniards moved on
Frederica and Oglethorpe advanced to meet them, and the
decisive battle of Bloody Marsh was on. When the smoke
cleared away Georgia was free. The battle had not been to
the strong. The comment of Oglethorpe was as charac-
istic as it was modest. 'The Spanish invasion which had a
long time threatened the colony, Carolina and all North
America, has at last fallen upon us, and God hath been our
deliverance.' And George Whitfield said of it, 'the deliver-
ance of Georgia from the Spaniards is such as cannot be par-
alleled but by some instances out of the Old Testament.'
"His work accomplished; his mission fulfilled, on July
23, 1743, he sailed for England, never to see again the land
to which he had devoted the best years of his life. He was
too great to escape the calumnies of the small and the in-
gratitude of the narrow. Having passed to payment the
expenditures made by him out of his personal fortune, the
English government revoked its action and appropriated
his money. Having availed themselves of his military tal-
ents, the advisers of royalty court-martialed him on grounds
which were dismissed as slanderous. Finally, he withdrew
from the service of an ungrateful monarch and entered upon
the last stage of the journey of life which was to end on July
1, 1785- King and courtier might see in him only a success-
ful rival for the fame which it was not given them to attain,
but with the great spirit of his time he became a welcome
guest. Authors laid their tributes at his feet and poets
bound about his brows the laurel wreaths of victory. Geor-
gia and her fate never passed from his thought. Tradition
has it that in the days of the Revolution he was tendered
the command of the English forces, and refused to take up
arms against the colony he had founded. Whether it be
true or no, never in thought or word that history records
was he ever disloyal to the colony to which he had devoted
the best vcars of his life.
IZth U. S. Infantry.
A Battalion of 2d Infantry.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. $j
"He had striven with success for the betterment of the
weak and helpless in an age of abject selfishness. He had
made an empire with a handful of the oppressed of earth,
, and the work had survived. He had overcome the Indian
I by persuasion and kindness and won the abiding friendship
I of the savages he had been sent to slay. He had encounter-
' ed the most powerful foe of England and driven him in dis-
astrous defeat before his scant battle-line. Reversing all
: the traditions of colonial administration, he had been toler-
ant and just. He was a builder and not an iconoclast; a
statesman and not a schemer; a soldier and not a plunderer.
"Brave and wise and merciful, the ends he accomplished
placed him in historic perspective a century ahead of the
day in which he worked. Honest in an era of guile, without
I fear and without reproach, he comes to us with his unstained
record, to live so long as Georgians shall stand upon the
ancient ways and see and approve the better things of life.
In all his brilliant career — in the hour of stress, in the mo-
ment of victory — no clamorous sound of vain and self-ap-
plauding words came from his lips There was no need.
That which he did sends its paeans down the centuries ; and
over his illustrious career Georgia stands guard forever"
THE UNVEILING. • !
At the conclusion of Judge Charlton's address Mr. J. Ran-
dolph Anderson, the Chairman of the Commission, and Mr.
Daniel Chester French, the sculptor, escorted to the base of
the monument His Excellency, Joseph M. Brown, Governor
of Georgia, and Mrs. J. J. Wilder, president of the Society
of Colonial Dames of America, and placing into their hands
the cords that held the two flags together, gave the signal
for the unveiling, and in a moment the heroic figure of Ogle-
thorpe stood revealed in the midst of the applauding multi-
DESCRIPTION OF THE MONUMENT.
The statue itself is of bronze nine feet in height facing
t south, and represents Oglethorpe in the full dress of a Brit-
ish general of the period of 1730. It rests upon a pedestal of
I pink-gray marble in Italian renaissance design. This die
1 rests upon a wide platform ornamented with garlands and
' tabled on the sides, with a lion rampant on each corner, car-
rying a shield. Upon the shields are carved the seals of
j<f A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
the colony of Georgia, the state of Georgia, the city of Sav-
annah, and the coat-of-arms of Oglethorpe. On the east and
west sides of the monument is a marble seat, and on the
north and south ends of the quadrangle is an exhedra in
limestone inclosing a grass plot.
On the south face of the pedestal is carved in colonial
style the following inscription :
The State of Georgia
The City of Savannah,
And the Patriotic
Societies of the State
To the Memory of
The Great Soldier
Eminent Statesman, and
General James Edward Oglethorpe who in
This City on the 12th
Day of February
A. D- 1733 Founded and
Colony of Georgia.
At the conclusion of the unveiling and dedicatory exer-
cises at the monument the several military companies which
had been grouped in the square moved off in order to the
strains of martial music to the Park Extension, where a
parade and grand review of the troops were made in the
presence of the distinguished guests and in view of thous-
ands of citizens who surrounded the Park on all sides.
The program as planned was fully carried out, and
the occasion was made one worthy of the memory of Geor-
gia's heroic founder.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF DANIEL CHESTER
Daniel Chester French, the sculptor whose genius and
artistic skill created the bronze statue of Oglethorpe, was
born in Exeter, New Hampshire, April 20, 1850. His pa-
rents were substantial New Englanders, and were connect-
ed with the families of Daniel Webster and John Greenleaf
Whittier. He received his education at Exeter, N. H., the
DANIEL CHESTER FRENCH.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 39
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Dartmouth
College. He studied sculpture in Boston and in Florence,
Italy, and in 1876-78 he had a studio in Washington. From
1878 to 1887 he was located in Boston and Concord, Mass.
and since that time he has had his studio in New York.
Mr. French is recognized as one of the foremost sculptors
of America. Among his best known works are ''The Min-
ute Man of Concord," a statue of General Cass in the Capi-
tol at Washington, a statue of Rufus Choate in Boston,
John Harvard at Cambridge, Mass., Thomas Starr King
in San Francisco, the colossal "Statue of the Republic" at
the World's Columbian Exposition, "Dr. Gallaudet and his
Deaf Mute Pupil," at Washington, the Milmore Memo-
rial (3d class medal at Paris Salon, 1892), bronze doors to
Boston Public Library, Statue of Alma Mater at Columbia
College, groups Europe, Asia, Africa, and America in front
of the New York Custom House, Statue of Samuel Spencer
in Atlanta, etc.
In 1900 he was awarded a medal of honor at the Paris
Exposition, and in 1902 he became a member of the Nat-
ional Academy. He is one of the trustees of the Metro-
politan Museum of Art in New York, and a member of the
National Sculpture Society, the Architectural League, and
Academia di S. Luca, Rome, Italy.
In 1888 Mr. French married Miss Mary Adams French
of Washington, and at present lives at 125 West 11th
street, New York City.
The statue to Oglethorpe is his last work, and in its spir-
ited conception and artistic execution it is worthy alike of
the distinguished sculptor and of Georgia's heroic founder.
40 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
Oglethorpe Monument Commission.
(1) Appropriation by State of Georgia $15,000.00
(2) " " City of Savannah* 12,000.00
(3) Funds raise i by Oglethorpe Monument Ass'n :
From Georgia Society of Colonial Dames of
America % 58984
From Daughters of American Revolution 1,176.26
" Georgia Society Sons of the Revolution 503.75
Proceeds of Hall given Dec. loth, 1903 779-75
Contributed by Oglethorpe Club 500.00
" " W. J. DeRenne, Esq 500.00
Sundry Contributions 75-43
Interest on deposits to Nov. 19th, 1910 1,062.37
Less sundry disbursements 40.47
Total turned over to the Oglethorpe Monu-
ment Commission 5»i46-93
(4) Funds raised by Georgia Society Colonial Dames
Contributed by S. P. Shotter, Esq 1,000.00
" " Jasper Monument Asso'n 772.10
Other amounts raised or appropriated, in-
cluding interest on deposits to Dec. s, 1910 1,701 58 3,473.68
(5 ) Contributions made direct to Oglethorpe Mon-
Georgia Historical Society 500.00
Joseph Hull, Esq 500.00
J. Florance Minis, Esq 100.00
Mrs. L. F. Minis 100.00
J. Randolph Anderson, Esq 100.00 1,300.00
(6) Interest on deposits 801.74
Total receipts by Commission 137,722.35
Paid for removing busts of Bartow and McLaws
from Chippewa Square to Park Extention | 278.00
Paid for planting trees, and sundry incidentals 88.38
P«ud for account monument and surroundings 37,355-97
•The total appropriation made by the City of Savannah was $15,000 of which,
under the terms nf the resolution of Council, the sum of $12,000 was to be applied
on the cost of the monument and $3j^oo was to be applied towards the expenses at-
tending the unveiling ceremonies. The moneys received from the city were applied
and used accordingly.
J. RANDOLPH ANDERSON,
Chairman Oglethorpe Monument Commission
17th U. S. Infantry.
Battalion 5th Infantry, Ga. State Troops.
To General James Edwatd Oglethorpe. 41
THE NAME AND THE DATE OF BIRTH OF OGLE-
It is a well known fact that there has existed for many
years much uncertainty concerning the full and correct
name of Oglethorpe, and the exact date of his birth. The
biographers of this distinguished man differ greatly upon
both these points. Jones and Harris give June 1, 1689,
Tlie Britannica (ninth edition) and the Dictionary of Nat-
ional Biography give December 22, 1696, and McCall places
the date at December 21, 1698. In all the letters and writ-
ten documents of Oglethorpe extant he signed his name
simply James Oglethorpe, though some of his biographers
give it as James Edward Oglethorpe.
In the Biographical Memorials of Oglethorpe by Harris,
pages 325 and following, the matter of his birth is discuss-
ed at some length, and in the Magazine of American His-
tory of 1883, Vol. VIII, part II, page 108, there occurs an
interesting article on the subject by W. S. Bogart of Sav-
annah. These discussions are based upon certain records
copied from the Register of Births and Baptisms in the
Church of St. James, Westminster, England, and from the
Register of Corpus Christi College, Oxford. The record
from the Register Book of Births and Baptisms belonging
to the Parish of St. James, Westminster, is given by Harris
as follows :
Bapt. I June 1689.
2 1 James Oglethorpe of Sir Theophilus and
I his lady Elinor, b. 1.
The interpretation of this is that James Oglethorpe, son
of Sir Theophilus and his lady Elinor, was born June 1,
1689, and baptised June 2.
The record of the entry of James Oglethorpe into Corpus
Christi College, Oxford, is thus given by Harris :
"1704, Jul. 9, term. S. Trin. Jacobus Oglethorpe, e C. C.
C. 16. Theoph. f. Sti. Jacobi. Lond. Equ. Aur. filius natu
That is, In Trinity Term, July 9, 1704, James Oglethorpe,
aged 16, youngest son of Sir Theophilus Oglethorpe, of St.
James's, London, was admitted into Corpus Christi Col-
These statements do not harmonize with each other, or
with several facts in the later history of Oglethorpe, and
^ A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument .
the matter of his name and the exact date of his birth have
remained for many years in much doubt.
When the monument to the memory of this distinguished
man was erected in Savannah in 1910, the question was
again brought up and earnestly discussed- In order to
determine it fully and with accuracy if possible, two inde-
pendent investigations were made, — one by W. J. DeRenne,
Esq., for the Monument Commission, and the other by Otis
Ashmore in behalf of the Georgia Historical Society. The
results of both these investigations agree, and the matter
so long in doubt is now definitely and authentically cleared
up and established, and the evidences given herewith. The
following photographic copy of a certificate obtained bj
Mr. DeRenne from St. Martin-in-the-Fields is self-explana-
ST. MARTIN-IN-THE-FIELDS, LONDON
Fol. /2. c?'
I /^^ee^^t.oi^^ /(o^(o .
^"^U^.^^ Ay ^-C-
'^^o ■ JZ'X-^
The above is a true exthact from the Registek Book of BAPTisMS
belonging to this Church.
Witness my hand, this / a^
44 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
From this it is clear that Oglethorpe's name was James
Edward, and that he was born December 22, 1696.
Without knowing of Mr. DeRenne's efforts, Otis Ash-
more, Corresponding Secretary of the Georgia Historical-
Society, took the matter up with the Lord Bishop of Lon-
don with a view of obtaining a correct copy of the record
of the births and baptisms of all the children of Sir Theophi-
lus Oglethorpe, and with the Dean of Corpus Christi Col-
lege, Oxford, to verify the date of Oglethorpe's entrance
into that institution. This correspondence follows :
Savannah, Ga , Dec. 8, 1910.
To His Lordship,
The Bishop of London,
The state of Georgia, U. S. A., has just erected at Savan-
nah a monument to the memory of General James Edward
Oglethorpe, the founder of this colony in 1733, and the date
of his birth has become a matter of inquiry with us. There
seems to be much uncertainty concerning the exact date,
and it is for the purpose of ascertaining it definitely that I
am writing you to assist us. You can probably refer this
letter to some one in official position to give us this infor-
mation, and by so doing you will confer a great favor upon
The biographical sketches of Oglethorpe give various
dates of his birth. Some give June 1, 1689 ; some give Dec-
ember 21, 1688 ; some December 22, 1688 ; and others give
December 22, 1696. The following extract from the Dic-
tionary of National Biography is our latest authority on
the matter of his birth.
"OGLETHORPE, JAMES EDWARD (1696-1785), gen-
eral, philanthropist, and colonist of Georgia, born in Lon-
don on December 22, 1696, was baptised next da}"" at St.
Martin's in the Fields. An elder brother, also named
James, born on 1 June, 1689, died in infancy (Notes and
Queries, 3d Sec. XH, 68). He matriculated at Corpus
Christi College, Oxford, on 8 July, 1714, but had already
obtained a commission in the British army in 1710."
These statements, however, do not all harmonize with,
some other facts of his subsequent life, and I would like to
secure an exact copy of the record of his baptism at St. Mar-
tin's in the Field.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 45
This record is said to read as follows :
Bap. I June, 1689
2 j James Oglethorpe of Sir Theophilus and
I his lady Elinor, b. 1.
We would be glad to have this record verified and inter-
preted by those familiar with these records. Does it mean
that James Oglethorpe was baptised on June 2, 1689, and
that he was born on June 1, 1689?
It is claimed that record refers to an elder brother al-
so named James who died in infancy. If so the baptismal
record of James Edward will probably be found under the
date December 22, 1696. Our Oglethorpe always signed his
name simply James, though there is good reason to believe
that his middle name was Edward. Can you throw any
light upon this point? What authority is there for the state-
ment that he was born in London rather than at Westbrook
at Godalming, Surrey?
From Nichols's Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth
Century, Vol. II, p. 16, we are told that Sir Theophilus Ogle-
thorpe had the following children :
I.— Lewis, born 1680-81. (Feb)
II.— Theophilus, born 1682.
III. — Eleanora, born 1684.
IV. — Anne
v.— Sutton, born 1686.
VI. — Henrietta
VII. — James, born June 1, 1869.
VIII. — Frances-Charlotte.
Is it practical to obtain from the church records the date of
birth, or at least the date of baptism, of these children?
At what age was it customary at that time to baptise
children? Was James, referred to in this record, baptised
when he was only one day old?
The Georgia Historical Society will be greatly obliged to
you if you will give such direction to this letter as to secure
for us the offtcial and reliable information which we seek.
Corresponding Secretary Ga. Hist Soc.
46 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
Savannah, Ga., U. S. A.
Jan. 10, 1911,
St. Martin's Vicarage,
Charing Cross, W. C.
Dear Sir :
In re James Edward Oglethorpe.
I received a few weeks ago your letter to the Lord Bishop
of London, asking for information in detail about this family.
My parish clerk has examined our registers with great care,
and I send you the results of his search. You will see that
he has examined the books at St. James, Piccadilly, as well
as St. Martin-in-the-Fields- These are the results which I
have now the pleasure of forwarding you. He can find
May I be allowed to say that as he is a poor man and has
taken great trouble over the matter, you may be disposed to
make some acknowledgement to him in the form of a fee,
but we make no charage.
L. E. SHELFORD.
Vicar of St. Martin-in-the-Fields.
St. Martin-in-the-Fields Parish Church.
Charing Cross, Jany. 6, 1911.
Dear Sir :
IN RE OGLETHORPE.
Your letter of December 8th last to the Lord Bishop of
London has been handed to me for attention, and in reply
thereto I beg to give you the result of my search through
our registers, which have extended some years after 1700 an
and before 1681.
JAMES EDWARD was undoubtedly baptised here on
December 23, 1696, having been born on the 22nd presuma-
bly in London ; as in those days it would scarcely be possible
and highly improbable to bring a child from Godalming to
be christened at Charing Cross the day after its birth.
Your second query is as to JAMES. He was born 1st
June, 1689 and was baptised on the 2nd of that month at
St. James's Church. Piccadilly, a parish adjoining this, but
he died in infancy ; being buried at St. lames's on the 15th
The reply to your next inquiry, "the age at which it was
customary to baptise children at that time", is, within a few
To Genet al James Edward Oglethorpe. 47
days of birth. Appended is a list of those I have been able
to find, and I would suggest that those I have not been able
to find may have been born and christened at Godalming.
in Surrey, as your letter infers they lived there.
ELEANORA, ANNE, SUTTON, HENRIETTA, and
MARY I cannot trace, but I do find CHARLES and AN
HARATH, which you do not give in your list.
Born 21st, Baptised 23rd February, 1681.
LEWIS OGLETHORP of Theophilus & Elin.
Baptised 20th February, 1682 (Date of birth not given.)
AN HARATH OGLETHORP of Theophilus & Elinor.
Born 9th, Baptised 11th March, 1684.
THEOPHILUS OGLETHORPE of Theophilus & Elli-
Baptised 22nd May, 1686. (Date of birth not given)
CHARLES OGLETHORP of Sr. Theophylus & Lady
This at St. James's Church, Piccadilly.
Born 1st, Baptised 2nd June, 1689.
JAMES OGLETHORP of Sr. Theophilus and his Lady
This at St. James's Church, Piccadilly,
Buried at St. James's, Picadilly, 15th June, 1690.
JAMES OGLETHORP. C. (This means child)
Born 7th, Baptised 7th September, 1692.
CHARLOTTE-FRANCES OGLETHORP of Sr. Theo-
philus & Eleanora.
Born 22nd, Baptised 23rd December, 1696.
JAMES EDWARD OGLETHORP of Coll. Theophilus
& Eleanora. (Coll. means Colonel.)
Should you desire stamped certificated copies of these
entries I can send them upon hearing from you, and I may
say in conclusion the parents of these children were not mar-
ried in this church.
Savannah, Ga., Dec. 8, 1910
To the Dean of Corpus Christi College,
University of Oxford,
The state of Georgia, U. S. A., has just erected at Sav-
annah a monument to the memory of General James Ed-
ward Oglethorpe, the founder of this colony in 1733, and the
date of his birth has become a matter of inquirv with us.
48 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
There seems to be much uncertainty concerning the exact
date, and the date of his admission into Corpus Christi Col-
lege will aid us in determining the question. From one of
his biographies the following copy of the University Register
"1704, Jul. 9, term. S. Trin. Jacobus Oglethorpe, e C. C. C.
16. Theoph. f. Sta. Jacobi. Lond. Equ. Aur. filius natu mi-
Will you do the Georgia Historical Society the courtesy
to compare this copy carefully with the record of original
entry on the University Register, and tell us if it is correct?
If it is not, will you please send me an exact copy of the re-
cord, together with a translation of it in accordance with the
usual meaning and understanding of such entries? The
figures "1704" are especially to be examined with care, for
it has been claimed that this date should be 1714. Are the
figures clear in the record? Is it your understanding that
the figures "16" signify that he was sixteen years old when
Will you also please verify the date of admission of Lewis
Oglethorpe into Corpus Christi College? This is given as
March 16, 1698-9.
The Georgia Historical Society will greatly appreciate
any courtesy you may show it in ascertaining definitely
these facts and writing me at your earliest convenience.
Corresponding Secretary Ga. Hist. Soc.
Corpus Christi College, Oxford,
December 23, 1910
To the Secretary of the Georgia Historical Society:
In respect to the date of the admission of James Edward
Oglethorpe to the University, I have relied on the help of
Mr. R. Lane Poole, keeper of the archives of the University,
as I was myself leaving Oxford at the time of receiving your
letter. Tlie information which he has kindly sent to me is
as follows :
In the Register of Matriculations (reference letters in the
Universitv Archives A I). "Tulv 9 1714 term. S. Trin. Ja-
cobus Oglethorpe E C. C. C. 16 Theoph. f. Sti. Jacobi Lond.
Eq. filiu natu minor." (Archives ref: A F.)
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 49
In the Autograph Subscription Book Oglethorpe signs
himself under the same date, July 9, 1714. "James Ogle-
thorpe e C. C. C. Eq : Aur. filius natu minor." (Archives
ref: A F.)
Mr. R. Lane Poole adds that the 16 following C. C. C. is
undoubtedly his age, since it is the regular practice to write
it so. There can be no question as to the accuracy of ^he
dates, owing to the double entry and the order of admis-
In the case of Lewis Oglethorpe, he appears in the Sub-
scription Book as, "Lewis Oglethorpe e C. C. C. Eq : filus
natu max." In the Matriculations Register, March 16,
] 698-9, is the date and the age 15 is added after his college.
So that in this case the date you quote is quite correct ac-
cording to the University Books. Tlie translation would be
as follows : "July 9, 1714, Trinity Term, James Oglethorpe
of C. C. C. (aged) ]6, younger son of Theophilus (Ogle-
thorpe) Knight, of St. James' London."
The dates are confirmed by the Buttery Books of the Col-
lege. Ludov. Oglethorpe appears in 1698. Jac. Ogle-
thorpe in 1714. The latter name disappears from the books
on May 3, 1717. It was re-entered on June 25, 1719, and fi-
nally disappeared on October 20, 1727.
I trust that this information will make it quite clear to
your Society that the date of admission of James Oglethorpe
was the later date of those you suggest. The information
as to the Corpus Buttery Books I have taken from the His-
tory of the College by the late president, T. Fowler, publish-
ed by the Oxford Historical Society. I have no doubt it is
correct, but will verify the references on my return to Oxford
and advise you at once if I discover any error. I should
post this information at least by the 20th January.
If there is or will be any account of the monument in the
press which you could without trouble forward to me, I
should be very much obliged, as it could not fail to interest
the College. I should be glad to get it reprinted in our Col-
Dean of C. C. C
so A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
From these investigations it is perfectly clear that Ogle-
thorpe, the founder of Georgia, was named James Edward,
and that he was born December 22, 1696.
From these records it likewise appears that there was art
elder brother, named also James, who was born June 1,
1689, and who died in infancy June 15, 1690. This fact of
an elder brother James, evidently unknown to the early
biographers of Oglethorpe, has created all the confusion.
The typographical error of "1704" for 1714 as the year of
his entrance into Corpus Christi College tended to increase
this confusion- It was for the very purpose of determining
this point that an eflfort was made to obtain the record of
the names of the other children together with the dates of
their births and baptisms. While the record of some of
these seem not to be complete, there can be no doubt of
the correctness of the record of James Edward, and this
is the only matter that need concern us.
It will be observed that Oglethorpe upon entering Corpus
Christi College gave his age at 16 years, when in reality
he was a little over 17 years.
An interesting fact revealed by the Buttery Books of the
college is the statement that Oglethorpe's name appears on
the books from July 9, 1714 to May 3, 1717, then disappears
from May 3, 1717 to June 25, 1719, when it was re-entered
and continues to appear till October 20, 1727. It is well
known that Oglethorpe left Oxford soon after he entered
to join the army of Prince Eugene on the Continent, and
that he returned to England in 1718. But as he was elected
to Pa:rliament from Surrey in 1722, it is difficult to under-
stand these entries on the Buttery Books of the college from
1719 to 1727. Did he actually return to Oxford after his
military experience on the Continent to complete his course,
or was his name thus continued on the books for some tech-
nical reason without his actual presence? This matter is
only incidental to the question of his name and the date of
his birth, but it is an interesting one nevertheless, and doubt-
less it can be explained by those more familiar with the
early forms of English university life.
It must be remembered that the date of Oglethorpe's birth
as here given is expressed in the old style of reckoning time,
as the new style was not adopted in England till 1752. Ex-
pressed in new style, therefore, Oglethorpe was born Janu-
ary 2, 1697.
The facts herein set forth and the evidence upon which
they are based are thus presented in full, in order that the
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. $1
matter so long in doubt may be definitely and finally set at
Corresponding Secretary Ga. Hist. Society.
OFFICIAL ORDER OF DISPOSITION AND MOVE-
MENT OF TROOPS AND SAILORS.
Troops participating in the unveiling of
The Oglethorpe Monument,
Savannah, Ga., Nov. 23rd, 1910.
The ceremonies incident to the unveiling of the Oglethorpe
Monument will be held in Chippewa Square, the site of
the monument, and will begin at 11 :30 o'clock, A. M., Nov.
The following instructions governing the troops partici-
pating are issued for the information and guidance of all
1. The Marshal's Staff will consist of:
1st Lieut. E. T. Weisel, Coast Artillery Corps, Adjutant,
Captain H. C. Williams, 2nd U. S. Field Artillery,
Captain Wm. R. Dancy, 1st Infantry, N. G. Ga.
Captain R. H. Mason, 2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga.
Chaplain M. G. Doran, U. S. Coast Artillery Corps,
1st Lieut Garrard Haines, C. A C, N. G. Ga.
The Aids will report in Dress Uniform, mounted, to the
Marshal at the Monument at 11 :15 o'clock, A. M.
2. The troops will be posted about the Monument dur-
ing the ceremonies as follows :
a. 2nd and 3rd Battalions 17th U. S. Infantry.
Provisional Battalion U. S. Coast Artillery Corps,
U. S. Marines and U. S. Sailors in column of masses in
the order named on Perry Street, west of the Monument,
facing east, head of the column resting on Bull Street.
b. 2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga., Cadet Corps University of
Georgia, Barnesville Cadets, and Benedictine College Ca-
dets, in column of masses in the order named, on McDon-
^2 A History of the Erection and Dedication of the Monument
ough Street, west of the Monument facing east, head of
column resting on line of curbing west of Square.
c. 1st Infantry N. G. Ga., 1st Battalion 5th Infantry N.
G. Ga., in column of masses in the order named on Hull
Street west of the Monument facing east, head of col-
umn resting on line of curbing west of Square.
d. Battalion Coast Artillery Corps N. G. Ga., and Na-
val Reserves in line in the order named on Hull Street
facing south, left resting on Bull Street.
e. 1st Battery Field Artillery N. G. Ga. in column of
sections c>n Hull Street, facing west, head of column rest-
ing on Bull Street.
f. 1st Squadron 11th Cavalry, Troop A. N. G. Ga., in
column of platoons in the order named on Bull Street, north
of Monument, head of column resting on Hull Street.
3. When the drapery is removed from the Statue, one
long blast will be sounded by bugle at the direction of the
Marshal ; each organization will be brought to "Present
Arms," by their respective Commanding Officers ; one long
blast following will be the signal for resuming "Order
4. The various organizations will be in their places as
indicated in paragraph 2 hereof by 11 :15 o'clock A. M.
5. Upon completion of the ceremonies at the Monu-
ment the troops will form column of squads and take up the
march south on Bull Street, in the following order :
2nd and 3rd Batt. 17th Infantry,
Batt. U. S. Coast Artillery Corps.
U. S. Marines,
U. S. Sailors,
2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga.
1st Infantry, N. G. Ga.
1st Batt. 5th Infantry, N. G. Ga.
Batt. Coast Artillery Corps, N, G. Ga.
Cadet Corps, University of Georgia,
Cadet Corps, Barnesville,
Cadet Corps, Benedictine College,
1st Battery Field Artillery N- G. Ga.
1st Squadron, 11th U. S. Cavalry,
Troop A. N. G. Ga.
The column will turn west on Gaston Street to Barnard
Street, then south on Barnard Street.
To General James Edward Oglethorpe. 53
The troops will then be formed in the Park Extension
in line of masses, facing east, right resting on Park Avenue.
In forming, organizations will turn east from Barnard
Street on the streets indicated below and will take position
in the Park Extension in Column of Masses at points which
will be indicated to the organization Cornmanders :
1st Battery and all Cavalry turn east on Hall Street, Na-
val Reserves and Cadet Organizations turn east on Gwin-
1st Infantry, N. G. Ga.. turn east on Bolton Street,
2nd Infantry, N. G. Ga., turn east on Waldburg Street,
17th U. S. Infantry, U. S. Coast Artillery Corps, U. S.
Marines, and U. S. Sailors turn east on Park Avenue.
6, The troops will be reviewed by the Governors of
Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama, who will be in au-
tomobiles on the east side of the Park Extension at the
intersection of Bolton and Drayton Streets, at which point
the prescribed salute will be rendered.
7. After passing the reviewing officers the column will
continue north on Drayton Street and each organization
will stand dismissed after passing Hall Street. No or-
ganization will be halted until it has cleared the column.
JOHN P. WISSER,
Colonel, Coast Artillery Corps, Marshal,
Official : EDWARD T. WEISEL,
1st Lieutenant, C. A. C, Adjutant.
The United States Regulars were encamped at Thirty-
first street and Waters Road. The camp was named by
Col, Wisser Camp Alexander R. Lawton, in honor of the
late Gen. Alexander R. Lawton, of Savannah.